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The Great War (1914-1918) Forum

Remembered Today:

Frank Hurley - A Photographers Life


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The wife just bought me this new release for AUS$65. Haven't read it yet but the introduction promises a very interesting book about a very interesting, if not contraversial, photographer.

Frank Hurley was the Australian official photographer for WW1 (1917 onwards) and WW2 but beyond this he was with both Mawson and Shackleton's Antarctic expeditions between 1911-1917. (In fact he didn't know about the war until returning from the second expedition).

Admittedly, I am a fan of Hurley and consider his work sensational but he was contraversial because in several of his WW1 works he used composites i.e. a series of photos put together to form one image and on occasion airbrushed in shell explosions. This brought and still brings criticism as to the reality of his photographs often being referred to as fakes. (Nigel is one of them!! ;) )

My perception is that his work was not fake - but to capture all that was going on he needed to initially individualize the seperate events. In a way he created an entire series of 'real' events in the single image.

If one was to ignore this controversy and those particular photos, the rest of his work from the Antarctic, through both wars and in various other areas of the world stand apart and show him to be the true genius he really was.

I'm looking forward to a good read!


P.S. How's them apples Nigel!!!

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SOunds really interesting Tim. Let us know whether you think it's value for the money.


PS. Doesn't seem to be available here (UK) on AMazon.

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